Saturday, July 21, 2007

Greetings from Israel

Greetings Haverbubble. It’s been two months since graduation and I miss you already. This is Ben Field, class of ’07, reporting from the land of Israel, the land of milk and honey, the land of hummus and falafel, the land of incredibly bad drivers and incredibly beautiful women, and most importantly, the land of the new Israel Baseball League (IBL). Last winter Dean Kannerstein told the senior Jewish black squirrel baseball players that we’d been invited to try out for professional baseball in Israel. This was a no-brainer: play pro baseball, spread the game we love to a part of the world Jews are told to love since preschool, take a paid vacation before ever setting foot in an office, and perhaps most importantly, delay the “real world”. Travis Zier, Nat Ballenberg and I were the three Haverfordians picked to take the journey.

So here’s the nitty-gritty. This summer marks the inaugural season of professional baseball in Israel. The players were chosen primarily by Dan Duquette, former General Manager of the Boston Red Sox and Montreal Expos. Six teams representing different Israeli cities are competing against each other in a 40 game season culminating in a playoff series at summer’s end. We play six games a week with an off-day on the Sabbath. God said on the seventh day you rest, so the dudes abide. All the teams are currently owned by the same entity (the IBL), but the goal is to eventually sell the franchises and operate the league in the same way other professional leagues operate. This season, all the players are living together in a camp-like atmosphere outside Tel Aviv. For all the details, check out our sweet website:

When I left for Israel I didn’t want to lose contact with my friends from the west, so I took the easy way out—I started writing a mass email. When the Haverblog people approached me I was three or four mass emails deep. Using the time management skills I learned at Haverford (a.k.a. avoiding excess work), here’s what’s going to happen: I am going to release these mass emails on a time delay and soon the blog will catch up to the email. I am hoping that this blog release will compete favorably with the release of the new Harry Potter book. My agent has informed me that the numbers appear promising. So what does the reader have to look forward to? Stay tuned for culture learnings for benefit glorious nation U.S.A., crazy travel stories, and some personal baseball accounts thrown into the mix. We’ll be in touch Haverworld.

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